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Title: Complimentary
Characters: Bruce/Clark
Disclaimer: The boys belong to DC and to each other, but not to me.
Notes: There have been so many good hurt/comfort fics posted very recently!  etain_anders , paxwolf , evangelfic ...just to name a few.  And the latter two are even cavefic!  But I wanted to write rai_daydreamer  a very classic h/c for her birthday, so...I persevered, even though it's been done so much better recently.  Yes, it's cliche, but...cliches are really hard to write tolerably well, I've discovered!  Also...Batman's treatment for snakebite is not the accepted approach anymore, but...I couldn't help myself.  *grin*
Rating: PG-13
Summary:  Superman and Batman are stranded on a planet with a red sun and Batman must care for an injured and poisoned Superman.
Word Count:
5500

"Isn't there any other inhabitable planet in the area, Bruce?"

Bruce stabbed at the star chart.  "This is the only one we can safely make it to before running out of oxygen.  With all our communications out and propulsion system shot, we can't count on a passing ship finding us, either.  We have to take a chance on the nearest planet, and this is it.  The World's Finest, taken out by a random meteor shower."  He folded his arms and glared grimly at the chart, with the glowing red ember of a star at the heart of the system they were making their way toward.  "I don't like it any more than you do, Kal."

"I sincerely doubt that," his companion grumbled.

Batman tapped the map thoughtfully.  "The atmosphere appears to be breathable and the climate survivable, and we're lucky for that.  Let's just hope the Javelin can handle the stress of atmospheric re-entry in this condition.  Then we just need to wait in the ship for someone to track us down.  No problem."  His voice was flat, pragmatic.  He began to check the instruments again, calibrating and adjusting.

Superman glowered at the star chart.  The red sun glared balefully back, like an unblinking crimson eye.  Batman would never believe him, but sometimes Superman envied the human.  Bruce's formidable powers of the mind and body could never be stripped from him by some random red light or a chunk of green crystal.  The Dark Knight was powered by his own unquenchable will, not a fluke of solar energy.

As the Javelin eased into the atmosphere of the planet, there was a thumping jolt, then a scream of overstressed metal.  Batman's hands were steady on the controls, but the ship began to buck and shudder around them.

Batman looked down at a readout.  His voice was level as he spoke over the rising cacophony.  "Kal, I think you're going to have to get us out of this.  She's not going to make it."  He flipped a toggle quickly, then went back to trying to hold the juddering controls steady.  "I'll try to get us as far into the atmosphere as possible before she starts to break up."

Superman nodded, knowing Batman wouldn't see him nod but also knowing words weren't necessary.  He'd do what he had to do.  As the ship began to disintegrate around them, he snapped the restraints holding Batman into his seat, wrapped his cape around the man to shield him from flying debris, and flew clear of the falling ship.

The light of the red sun on him was greedy, covetous.  He could feel it sapping his strength and abilities almost immediately as he dodged the fireball of the Javelin, shrapnel screaming by him.  One chunk hit him in the small of the back and knocked him off-balance, sending them tumbling wildly through the air, downward together.  Kal struggled to regain his equilibrium and almost succeeded before hitting the ground with a bone-jarring thump, cushioning Bruce from the impact as much as he could. Kal staggered to his feet, feeling the pain of the impact in his muscles and sinews.  Red light in the marrow of his bones, eating away at him.

Batman shook off the red cape, stood up, and looked around.  About them stretched a massive jungle, no sign of habitation.  In the air above, trails of smoke and steam feathered down.  "So much for staying in the ship," Batman noted grimly.

Superman nodded, surveying the landscape.  They were in a small clearing surrounded by huge trees that looked rather like sequoias, stretching upward into the amethyst sky.

"Can you do a surveying flight, get a feel for the lay of the land?"  Batman asked.

"I can't go far.  I'm not sure how long I'll be able to stay airborne here and I don't want to risk our getting separated.  But let me see if I can at least find us a river we can follow."  Superman lifted off.  The planet's gravity was very slightly stronger than Earth's;  it tugged at him, pulling him down.  The crimson light nibbled at his strength.  He took a moment, hovering in the air away from his companion, to take deep breaths, feeling panic rising up in him.  He probably only had a few hours in this light before his powers were gone and he was--useless.  Just some guy Batman would have to watch out for, an obstacle and a hindrance, slowing him down.

Deep breaths, Clark.  He sucked in hot, humid air and scanned the landscape below him.  Then he lowered himself back to the reddish soil beneath them, landing with a rather graceless thump and a wince.  "The nearest river is a few hours' walk to the west, going by the position of the sun.  The planetary information seems to be correct about inhabitants--I didn't see any sign of civilization, at least."

Batman nodded thoughtfully.  "First priority has to be finding water and shelter.  We need to find someplace to wait until a rescue party gets close enough to pick up on our communicators.  And it would be best to find someplace before nightfall--and before your powers run out."  He looked appraisingly at Superman, most likely evaluating how long it was before Clark became so much baggage, and Clark gritted his teeth.  "Let's start toward the river."

"I could fly us--"

Batman shook his head.  "That would save us some time but at the cost of burning off some of your energy that could be better used in other ways.  And we need to start evaluating the terrain and possible wildlife."  He turned west and started picking his way through the lush forest, Superman following cautiously after.

They made their way in silence through the jungle, the only sounds the eerie warbles of alien life.  Once there was a strange trilling roar nearby, and both men froze, but whatever it was made no other appearance.  The jungle was a riot of colors:  vines dripping with chartreuse trumpet-shaped flowers, rock formations of violet-streaked turquoise, ferns with fronds dappled gold and pink.  All bathed in the febrile light of the red sun above them, malevolent as a witch's curse, beating down on his head.

A huge fallen tree blocked their way.  Batman looked at Superman.  "Can you move it?"

"I can try."  He heaved the log aside, but it took effort.  He stood for a second, his breath coming faster than he wanted it to.

"Do you need a rest?"  Batman's voice was scrupulously neutral.

"No," Clark snapped, sounding petulant even to himself.  "I'm fine."

Batman drew close and studied Clark's face for a moment, then suddenly reached out and touched his fingers to Clark's brow.  They came away wet.  "If you're sweating, your powers are almost gone, Kal," Bruce pointed out.  "Don't be stoic and overdo it, that'll only get both of us in trouble."

Clark glared at him.  He had a stitch in his side now.  "It's just hot, all right?"

Batman looked at the beads of sweat making their way down Kal's face for a second, then reached up and pulled off his cowl, revealing his own sweat-damp curls.  He wiped his brow with an edge of his cape, then suddenly smiled at Superman.  "It is at that," he agreed.  Then he started off through the jungle again, leaving Kal to trail behind, still rather stunned by the rare and inexplicable smile.

The rushing sound of water started to fill the air, which steadily grew even damper and more clinging.  Soon the two of them emerged on a cliff overlooking a gorge filled with rushing water, clear as glass except where it broke into churning foam below smooth rocks.  They made their way along the ledge, looking for a way down. 

"I think I see a cave right over there."  Bruce let go of a low-hanging branch to point and it snapped back to catch Clark in the face, twigs raking his cheeks.  "Ow!" Clark sputtered.  

Bruce turned to look at the reddened marks along Clark's face, his lips thinning.  "I take it that means we can't count on you to sterilize our drinking water?"

The dismissive tone stung more than the scratches along his face.  "I'd say that's a pretty accurate analysis, Bruce.  You can't count on me anymore."

Bruce's eyebrows drew down sharply and he opened his mouth to say something, but at that moment the quavering roar they had heard earlier sounded again, much closer this time.  Both of them dropped to a combat stance just as the underbrush erupted into an explosion of rainbow color which resolved itself into some kind of serpent with a multitude of feathered wings and a mouthful of diamond-glittering fangs.

The tail knocked Clark flying as the serpent arrowed in on Batman, jaws snapping at his face.  The lithe scaled body wrapped around the black-armored form and squeezed;  Clark could hear the breath rush from Bruce's lungs as the coils constricted, lifting him off the ground.  "Hey!" he yelled in a panic at the snake, scrambling to his feet and scrabbling for a rock to throw at their attacker.  Without super-strength it fell woefully short and he grabbed another, managing to bounce it weakly off the gleaming rainbow body this time.  The head swivelled toward him and the serpent hissed angrily, baring what looked like thousands of teeth.  Clark heaved another rock and somehow caught the thing right between its fuchsia eyes.  "That's right, come and get me, you son of a bitch!"

It moved a lot faster than Clark expected.  He managed to get his hands up to ward its fangs away from his throat and felt the hot needles sinking into them, the tail wrapping around his chest and squeezing.  He felt ribs crack, the burning in his hands spreading, his vision going as hazy and crimson as the horrible sunlight everywhere, in his blood and bones and heart...

Dimly he realized the serpent's coils were loosening and glimpsed the decel line wrapped around its neck as the ground started to move toward him.

He never even felt the impact.

: : :

Bruce kicked the feathery body aside to kneel next to Clark.  The Kryptonian was pale and only the whites of his eyes were showing.  Cursing to himself, Bruce grasped Clark's hands, noting the puncture wounds in them.  Stupid, stupid Clark.  The gauntlets would have protected my hands, you moron...  Bruce slipped a small knife from his belt and carefully made an x-shaped incision over the livid wounds on the heel of Clark's thumb.  Red blood welled up from the cuts.  Stupid, stupid...  Bruce put his lips to Clark's palm, sucked blood, spat it to the side.  Stupid, noble, stupid, self-sacrificing brave idiot...  His mouth went numb almost immediately;  the poison was virulent.  He put his mouth to Clark's hand again, drew blood and poison into his mouth.  He couldn't tell how much of it he'd gotten out;  Clark was still white and shaking. 

He tried to lift the Kryptonian and discovered he'd probably cracked some ribs in the struggle;  pain lanced through his chest and he grunted.  "Kal, stand up," he said.  The other man shivered more and curled up into a ball, his breathing shallow.  Bruce put all of the Bat he could into his voice, making it crack like a whip.  "Get up, Clark." 

Half-conscious at best, injured, racked with poison and bereft of powers, Clark Kent flinched and staggered to his feet at the command, swaying.  Bruce supported him and the two of them made their way slowly to the cave mouth.

Inside the cave it was dark until Bruce's eyes adjusted and he realized there was a faint reddish glow from the walls.  He pulled off his cape and arranged it on the floor, then realized Clark was still standing, struggling to stay upright despite his injuries.  Because Bruce had told him to.  "Clark, you can lie down." 

Clark dropped, a puppet with its strings cut, onto the black cape.  Bruce bandaged the cut hand, holding it still to wrap gauze around it.  The sight of Superman's skin broken and bleeding made him feel nauseated, somehow.  Seeing Superman injured always did:  it seemed in some strange way to violate the known laws of the universe.  But always in the past there had been medical attention available when Kal got hurt.  Superman would get whisked to the medlab and there, safely out of Batman's sight, someone would nurse him to health.  Bruce always did his best not to visit the medlab while Kal was in it.  No one wanted the Bat's bedside manner around while they healed, after all.

But now, here, there was no one to take care of Superman but him.  He realized he'd been holding and staring at Kal's bandaged hand for much longer than necessary, and jumped up to collect some water.  He slipped from the cave, murmuring, "I'll be right back," in case Kal could hear him.

When he came back with a few pouches of water, precious water purification tablets dissolving into them, Kal was curled up toward the cave wall, shivering.  At the sound of Batman's footsteps Kal tossed onto his back, revealing the pallor of his drawn face, his sweat-soaked hair.  Batman removed one of his gauntlets to put his hand to Kal's forehead.  It was burning with fever, so hot that Bruce felt alarm rise up in him.  Kal murmured something incoherent and moved his head restlessly as if to try and maximize the area touched by Bruce's cooler hand.  Bruce brushed the sweat from Kal's forehead, then moved back a few feet to crouch on his haunches and consider the situation, staring absent-mindedly at Kal's pale face in the ruddy light from the cave walls.

Superman was badly poisoned, wounded, and running a high fever.  Batman himself had probably several broken ribs. There was no way they could move now.  Probably the Justice League would be able to track them down in a day or two, but until then, or until Clark was able to move, he was going to have make do here.

He desperately hoped that winged serpent didn't have a mate nearby.

In the meantime, he had to make sure Kal got some water into him.  With the heat and the fever he was sure to be dehydrated soon.  He had to be careful with their water because he only had a few purification tablets, but even a little bit would probably help Kal.  Bruce dipped his fingers into the tiny container of precious water and touched them to Kal's already-parched lips.  Kal made a small noise and licked the moisture off his lips.  Bruce repeated the process, careful not to waste any water. 

The third time, as he touched his dripping fingers to Kal's mouth, Kal's tongue darted out to meet the touch, brushing Bruce's fingers with soft, damp heat.

Bruce jerked his hand back as though he'd touched a white-hot poker, then stopped and almost laughed at himself.  Seeing Superman hurt had him badly rattled, apparently.  There was no other way to explain his reaction to that fleeting touch, that quick impression of moist warmth on his fingertips.

He looked at Kal's mouth and decided that probably was enough water for now.  He wouldn't want to waste it all.

Batman curled up on the floor near Superman and resolved to get some sleep. 

His fingertips tingled.

: : :

Batman awoke to the sound of Superman thrashing around, struggling to move, falling over.  "Kal," he said, trying to keep his voice level, "It's all right.  Relax."  The other man didn't seem to hear him at all.  Worried Clark would hurt himself more trying to move in his fever, Batman reached over and held his shoulders down.  Kal struggled against him for a moment but was unable to break Bruce's grip without his powers.  He went limp with a horrible groan. 

Bruce felt his forehead again.  If anything, he was hotter than before.  Kal's lips were dry, the lower one cracked and bloody as a result of their brief struggle.  Bruce cursed himself for being so worried about conserving water earlier and picked up one of the small containers.  As he moved it to Kal's lips he noticed it was trembling in his hands, and he took a moment to steady it better.  It would do no good if he spilled it.  He tilted it to Kal's mouth and let the water trickle past his lips, relieved when Kal swallowed noisily. 

The last swallow turned into a rattling cough, and Kal spoke for the first time since the serpent had attacked.  "Stupid," he said hoarsely, and Bruce thought for a moment he meant how Bruce had handled the water.  "Stupid," Superman repeated, "Useless, stupid."  He opened his eyes and looked at Bruce and through him, and Bruce realized he wasn't talking to him at all.  He was delirious with fever now.  "I know, I know," moaned Clark in response to something Bruce couldn't hear.  "Stupid."  A pained breath.  "So sorry."

With a horrible lurch Bruce realized Clark was talking about himself.  "What?" He sputtered without thinking, not even sure if the other man could hear him.  "What are you talking about?  You're not stupid."

"...stupid," Clark echoed him with finality, staring at him with fever-bright eyes.

"No, no, you're not stupid, you idiot.  And you're not useless."

Clark sighed and closed his eyes again.  "I know.  Idiot.  Big...useless idiot."  His breath was far too shallow and fast.

Bruce felt a sudden urge to tear his hair.  He grabbed Clark's hand, ignoring the other man's flinch, and checked the pulse.  Far too fast.  Keeping his fingers on the thready beat in Clark's wrist, he tried to calm the man down.  "You're not--"  Damn.  Be positive.  "You're...useful, Kal.  Very...useful."  This seemed a very weak reassurance at best, but it appeared to calm Clark down a little.  "You...lift things very well.  And the flying is extremely impressive."  Trapped in a cave and forced to compliment Superman;  surely any other member of the League would have been more fit for this job.  Superman was frowning again and tossing his head.  "You're very strong and have an extraordinary range of powers.  You're like the Swiss Army knife of the League." 

Batman felt a glow of pride in that last compliment--he thought it was rather inspired.  Then he realized that Superman was trying to pull his wrist away and his pulse rate was up again, racing against Bruce's fingers.  In a frozen moment of horror, Bruce saw tears slipping from Kal's closed eyes, tracking down his grimy cheeks.  He fought a wild impulse to drop Kal's wrist and bolt from the cave to safety.  Find a strategy, he told himself sternly.  Find the right words to calm Kal down.  For some reason, complimenting his powers clearly wasn't the correct course of action.  No reason to panic, he told himself, just find a different approach.  Simple.

"You're...very good.  A good person, Kal.  Very brave and kind and big-hearted.  You seem to--to love everybody.  Somehow."  Superman's pulse still hammered against Bruce's skin, although his breathing calmed slightly.  This line of compliment, however, was making Bruce very uncomfortable.  He wasn't sure he wanted to be dwelling on Kal's personality for some reason.  He decided to switch to more superficial qualities and hope they'd do the trick.  "You're extremely handsome, in addition.  Nice hair.  Very black.  Your eyes are good too.  They're...blue."  If he hadn't been holding on to Kal's wrist, Bruce might have buried his face in his hands.  Why couldn't he do this convincingly?  This wasn't any different from handing empty compliments to Vicki Vale, after all, and it was easy to natter that her eyes were the color of a lapis dawn shot through with golden light.  "Bright...blue." 

This was hopeless.  Entirely hopeless.  Even more annoying, these pathetic compliments were the ones that seemed to be calming Kal down;  his face was stiller now and his heartbeat less erratic.  Batman mustered all his strength for another effort.  "You have excellent bone structure."  Great, Bruce.  Make him sound like a stud stallion.  "Nicely balanced ears.  I know that seems minor, Clark, but lopsided ears can ruin the whole symmetry of a face."  He studied Clark's face, looking for something else to praise.  It was really the whole overall effect, he thought distractedly.  It was surprisingly hard to focus on just one isolated thing.  "Strong chin.  Good mouth." 

He remembered, with a sudden jolt, how Kal's lips had felt under his fingers, soft and hot.  And his tongue...

Well, there was no need to go on about Clark's mouth at length, really.  What else to compliment?  "Red and blue suits you.  Good choice of color scheme."  He almost threw his hands up in despair then, which reminded him that he was still holding Kal's wrist between his fingers. 

He looked at the hand closely, its palm up and fingers curled slightly inward.  "Nice hands.  Very broad, very strong.  Very...well, very filthy right now, actually."  There was dirt and blood under Kal's fingernails;  for some reason this made Bruce feel very ill at ease.  He ran a finger along one of the creases in the palm, along the map of Clark's life there in his hand.  The Kryptonian made a noise that...didn't sound unhappy, which was good.  Moved by a mad impulse--kiss it better--Bruce raised Clark's hand to his mouth and touched the bandage at the heel of his thumb with his lips.  Then it was only a few centimeters to the bare skin of Clark's palm, damp with fever, warm, real beneath his mouth.  Clark's fingers twitched restlessly again and grazed against the side of Bruce's face, feather-light.  Bruce heard someone make a small sound, full of yearning.

He was distantly surprised to realize it was him.

He turned the hand he was holding over gently.  "Good knuckles," he said, his voice sounding odd to his ears as it echoed off the cave walls.  "Good...spaces between the knuckles."  He touched his mouth to the large knuckles, his tongue to the vulnerable gaps between them.  He tasted salty sweat and something else that was just Kal, just the taste of Kal's skin.  "You even taste good.  You taste like joy."  His voice was shaking, almost certainly with mortification at having said such a lunatic thing out loud.  He ran his mouth down the back of Clark's hand, feeling dark hairs brush his lips.  He shifted his grip so could touch Clark's wrist with his mouth, feeling the sinews and tendons under the smooth skin, tasting Clark's pulse, the rushing, precious beat beneath his lips.  He held it there, counting the beats like stars.  Clark's pulse was stabilized and steady now.

Bruce's, on the other hand, seemed to be running rather amuck for no very good reason.  He curled up near Superman and tried to calm his treacherous body, the blood pounding riotously through him.  When he tried to release Clark's hand the Kryptonian stirred and muttered, his handsome face creased in a frown until Bruce caught his hand up again.  So it seemed easier just to lie there, holding on to Clark's hand. 

Eventually he drifted into a restless sleep in which he kept dreaming that Kal was slipping away from him.  He couldn't seem to rest well until he moved Clark's hand to cup his face, the heel of Clark's palm brushing against his mouth.  There, he thought in sleepy satisfaction.  Clark couldn't go anywhere now.

He slept.

: : :

Bruce woke up to lapis eyes shot through with golden light looking at him, blinking and bemused, looking at him with his face still nuzzled to the palm of Superman's hand.  He scrambled to his feet.  "You had a fever.  I was monitoring your pulse," he said brusquely. 

Clark wet cracked lips with his tongue and tried to speak, but nothing came out.  The fever seemed to have broken, but he was still pale as death, his face drawn into lines of exhaustion and pain.  Bruce knelt by him and gave him a little more water.  "I...had an awful dream," Clark said in a weak whisper.  "The JLA was a tribunal...put me on trial."

Bruce scoffed.  "Put Superman on trial?  Highly unlikely."

A faint breath of laughter.  "Superman was on the tribunal.  I was just...me.  Batman was there too, they all were, judging me.  But there was..."

Bruce waited for Clark to finish the sentence, but after a while it was clear the Kryptonian had drifted back into sleep. 

Bruce felt a terrible restlessness grip him like fury at the idea of Clark dreaming of Batman finding him wanting.  He was fairly sure a nightmare vision of him would not have said kind things to Clark. 

After all, the waking version of him so rarely did.

And what had Bruce come up with to counter that fevered recrimination?  "Useful.  Black hair.  Good knuckles."  Good knuckles! 

He found himself on his feet, pacing.  He had to find something to keep busy, something practical and functional to do with his energy beyond paying lame compliments to ailing Kryptonians.  A barricade for the cave mouth, in case there were predators;  that they could use. 

He set to work with fevered intensity, gathering fallen branches and vines to fashion into something like a door.  He had them lashed together and was trying to fasten the makeshift door to the sides of the cave properly when a hand reached past him to stabilize his work.  He whirled to find Superman standing, weaving and sweating, pushing feebly on the door.  "I can help," he said faintly.

"Help?  You can hardly stand up!  Lie back down, please, Kal," Bruce said, annoyed at the imploring tone in his voice.  It was very--disconcerting--to have Kal look so pale and upset.

"Let me help, please, Bruce."  There was a light to Clark's eyes that Bruce didn't like much at all;  he wondered if the fever was truly gone yet.  "I have to...have to help."  He made another grab at the door and almost tumbled over.

Irritation boiled over in Bruce;  he grabbed Clark's shoulders and pushed him roughly back toward the black cape on the floor.  "Kal, you damn fool idiot."  Blue eyes clouded with pain winced away from his and Bruce cursed to himself but couldn't seem to stop the tumbling flow of annoyed words.  "Why do you always have to be so damn useful, it's like you think no one will like you if you're not busy saving everything.  Which is ridiculous and...and stupid.  People don't like you because of your damn utility, they like you because you're kind and good and noble and have a sly sense of humor you try to keep hidden and you're brave and...and interesting.

Clark's knees gave out again and he went down in a heap, Bruce catching his weight and lowering him back onto the cape.  Clark was staring at him, and now of course Bruce couldn't seem to stop talking.  "Just when are you going to get it through your dense Kryptonian head that everybody loves you, you moron?  For the life of me, I can't figure out how you can be so damn humble;  I can only chalk it up to superhuman stupidity, because everybody loves you, Clark.  Everybody loves you.  Everybody.  Loves you."

He seemed to have run out of words again except that last phrase and alarming variations on it, so he stopped talking in order to spare Clark the repetition.  He looked away.

After a while Clark took a breath.  "I told you...about my dream, last night.  That the JLA put me on trial.  All of them.  Batman and Superman and everyone.  Telling me I was...not a good person."

Bruce nodded wordlessly, not looking at Clark.  That Clark's subconscious would cast Batman as an accuser...displeased Bruce.

"I couldn't defend myself.  But there was someone there beside me, in my dream.  Holding my hand.  He defended me."  Clark's voice was warm.  "I couldn't hear his exact words, but I could hear what he meant under them."

"And what did he mean?"  Bruce's attempt at 'mildly curious' failed when his voice cracked just a little at the end.

He felt Clark's hand close around his, but couldn't bring himself to look at the other man.

He felt Clark's lips grazing his knuckles, Clark's tongue ever so lightly touching his fingers, velvet and silken heat.

"He meant that he...liked me, and I was okay," said Clark against Bruce's fingers.

Now Bruce did look down.  Clark's eyes were steady, serious.  Hopeful.  "He liked you and you were okay?" Bruce echoed incredulously.  "You..." he swallowed.  "You have a gift for understatement, Clark." 

He felt Clark smile against his hand, and then Clark's tongue was slipping between his fingers, more boldly now, leaving trails of fiery sensation in its wake.  Bruce tried to catch his breath, and then Clark slid Bruce's index finger into his mouth.  Damp heat, warm tongue caressing along his skin...Clark made a small, satisfied sound and Bruce's world seemed to be unravelling around the edges.  This time it was his knees that gave out, and he was down on the floor with Clark, pulling his hand away just long enough to replace it with his mouth and his tongue, tasting Clark's blood from his split lip, tasting Clark's smile.

Tasting joy.

When Clark raised his arms to put them around Bruce they both winced as two sets of broken ribs re-asserted their presence.  Clark laughed softly, lips still brushing Bruce's.  "I...I don't think I'll be doing anything too energetic right now, Bruce."

Bruce ran his hands gently through the other man's hair, sweat-soaked and filthy, somehow still soft.  "Do you think you can sleep?  You need more sleep.  Idiot," he added as an afterthought, and to see Clark smile again.

"I think I can, if you'll stay with me." 

Bruce nodded.  "I'll stay with you."  Clark caught his breath at whatever he saw in Bruce's face then, and Bruce nodded again.  "I'll stay with you, Clark."

They were still curled up next to each other, Clark's hand held to Bruce's face once more, when their communicators beeped simultaneously.  "Superman?  Batman?  Are you down there?"  John Stewart's voice.

Bruce sat up.  "Lantern, yes, this is Batman.  Superman and I are here, can you track us?"

Green Lantern's brisk, efficient voice was filled with frank relief.  "We've got you located.  We'll be there in about fifteen minutes to pick you up."  As Stewart spoke, Superman dragged himself painfully to a sitting position, leaning heavily on Batman's shoulder.

"You'll want to bring a stretcher, too," Batman said.

Hawkgirl's voice broke in.  "Are you injured?"

"We've both got some broken bones and Kal's been poisoned by one of the local fauna, but I think he's going to be--ah--" A hot tongue was tracing around the outside of Bruce's ear, lapping behind it, following its lines.  "I, uh, I think he's going to be...all right."

"I'm fine," said Clark firmly, and darted his tongue into Bruce's ear very briefly.  Batman stiffened and grunted slightly despite himself.

"Are you sure you're all right, Batman?"  Shayera sounded concerned.  "You sound a little--"

"--no major problems here," Bruce said emphatically, glaring at Superman, who grinned back unrepentantly.

Soon Hawkgirl and Green Lantern were knocking on their makeshift door, carrying two ends of a stretcher and bickering good-naturedlyHawkgirl gently lifted Superman onto the stretcher;  he made a soft sound of pain and went white, his eyes closed, and Bruce found himself holding on to his hand without quite knowing how he got there.  "I'm right here, Kal," he said to the pain-tensed face, and Clark smiled a little and slitted his eyes open to look at Bruce.

"I know.  Thank you."

Green Lantern was examining the door.  "Nice construction," he said appreciatively.  "I suppose having the Boy Scout around must have been helpful."

Batman's voice was level, cool.  "He was...useful."

Hawkgirl snorted.  "Don't knock yourself out with the compliments there, Dark Knight."

Clark felt Bruce's thumb stroke the back of his hand, ever so slightly.  He leaned back on the stretcher and smiled.

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jij
Jan. 8th, 2007 02:35 pm (UTC)
I actually snorted out loud when Bruce was trying to come up with compliments

That was very hard to write! I think I'm too used to coming up with flowery compliments for Superman--keeping it ridiculously terse was oddly difficult. :)

And then, when Clark licked Bruce's finger? *thud*

I definitely have a thing for the intersections of hands and mouths. damo_in_japan kept bugging me to add more detail in his beta and hand porn was all that kept coming to me. :)

Hee! Glad you liked it!
yamheads
Jan. 8th, 2007 02:07 pm (UTC)
Oh, I knew this was good just by reading the lj-cut. This was so perfect. Bruce groping for compliments, coming up with "good knuckles".

Hottest part for me? Batman on the communicater, Clark at his ear! Perfect.
jij
Jan. 8th, 2007 02:39 pm (UTC)
You knew this was good from reading "You...lift things very well"? *giggle*

I really rather liked "good knuckles" as one of the lamest compliments ever...although when combined with licking said knuckles it's probably a lot more effective.

Hottest part for me? Batman on the communicater, Clark at his ear!

That probably could have used some expanding. Hell, that concept probably deserves its own fic. *looks crafty*

Thanks for the comment! I'm in a peeved mood tonight and so I wanted to get Rai's story up a little early and share the hand porn. :)

tmelange
Jan. 8th, 2007 03:33 pm (UTC)
I hadn't realized how much I was missing classic h/c until now with such great stories to remind me. This was so much fun, Jen. Beyond the fact that it was an outstanding story, it was like a trip down memory lane, back to all the reasons I started liking m/m before there was slash to read for real.

I loved the hand porn, :)) but I *really* loved the two insights into characterization: Clark's feelings of uselessness and Bruce's inability to express his feelings. Also, this little bit of cape porn was a wonderful mental image:

>>he snapped the restraints holding Batman into his seat, wrapped his cape around the man to shield him from flying debris, and flew clear of the falling ship.

The other thing I really loved was that the different environment allowed you to show off your descriptive prowess. Like this:

>>The light of the red sun on him was greedy, covetous.

Just beautiful.

This was a great read, Jen. I was cheering for them by the end, with a big smile on my face. Kudos, and thanks for writing this.

jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:40 am (UTC)
I hadn't realized how much I was missing classic h/c until now with such great stories to remind me.

H/C is a lot of fun to read and write, once you get into the rhythm of it!

I *really* loved the two insights into characterization: Clark's feelings of uselessness and Bruce's inability to express his feelings.

Thanks, I enjoyed digging into both of those quite a bit. Clark can be delightfully woobie when he's feeling useless, and Bruce gets wonderfully frustrated when he can't express himself. Glad to continue the nostalgia trip of the week! :)
tmelange
Jan. 8th, 2007 05:12 pm (UTC)
I just actually read your notes to this story and wanted to point out something for my own peace of mind: cliches are a wonderful thing. LOL "Cliche" is another example of a word (like fluff) that has a negative connotation in the real word but that denotes a well-loved convention in fandom. I've been noticing lately inthe S/B fandom that old fandom labels are being given a real world meaning outside of the old school fandom meanings, imputing a derogatory intent when none was intended--and perhaps it's a particularly thing to comic fandom where a lot of the participants are so young/new. Cliches are popular devices, well loved because of their tried and true nature, and very hard to do *well.* Certainly, we wouldn't have half as much fun in fandom without them. LOL
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:13 pm (UTC)
Certainly, we wouldn't have half as much fun in fandom without them. LOL

That's for sure! *grin* And yes, they're hard to write well, because they've all been done before, after all. Finding some relatively fresh angle and describing it effectively can be a challenge.

*breaks out pompoms for cliches*
evangelfic
Jan. 8th, 2007 06:18 pm (UTC)
Oh man, I am so sad that this ended!

I started laughing out loud here:

"You...lift things very well. And the flying is extremely impressive."

And kept laughing for the rest of Bruce's compliments.

Your Batman was really great. And Clark's feelings of uselessness were perfectly written. I loved this observation:

Bruce's formidable powers of the mind and body could never be stripped from him by some random red light or a chunk of green crystal. The Dark Knight was powered by his own unquenchable will, not a fluke of solar energy.

Bravo!
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:50 am (UTC)
Your Batman was really great. And Clark's feelings of uselessness were perfectly written.

I've discovered I inevitably end up in toonverse for certain Batman voices, especially funny or frustrated ones, or ones that are protective of Clark. Considering toonverse Clark is one of the least emotionally vulnerable Clarks around, I figure it's got to be Kevin Conroy that brings it out in me, LOL. And I have a thing about Clark feeling useless, I guess. Poor guy, I'm constantly robbing him of his powers. :)

Thanks for commenting and I'm glad you liked it!
bagheera_san
Jan. 8th, 2007 06:25 pm (UTC)
This is exactly how Clark without his powers would feel - completely missing the fact that Batman must feel this way all the time when he's traipsing around with his super-powered colleagues. I love that at the end, Hawkgirl and Lantern automatically assume that Superman was still the strong and useful one in the situation.
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:53 am (UTC)
LOL, it's true, although I think Clark without powers would feel a lot more useless than Batman, who's so all-around amazing. :) Batman's super-power is being totally awesome. *grin*

And yeah, GL and Hawkgirl are oblivious, aren't they? "The man's got no powers and is burning up with fever, but I'm sure he helped a lot." :)
vespa331
Jan. 8th, 2007 06:30 pm (UTC)
Oh that's hilarious, Bruce, you're so inept! Even when you manage to say nice things you have to be an ass at the same time! Lucky for you Clark can read between the lines.

I support hand porn. Hot damn.
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:56 am (UTC)
Even when you manage to say nice things you have to be an ass at the same time!

He's great that way, isn't he? "You're great, you moron!" Such a...guy.

I support hand porn.

I think that should be an icon somewhere. *grin* Glad you liked! I enjoyed writing it quite a bit...
bradygirl_12
Jan. 8th, 2007 07:36 pm (UTC)
Mmm, how delicious is this! Yes, h/c is the classic forerunner of slash, and when two of our favorite guys wind up in a h/c situation, it's only a natural progression in many cases for the slash to follow as strong emotions are brought to the fore. There was a classic Leslie Fish K/S story published in the '70s that wonderfully explored how h/c was often a substitute for slash, too, as the male characters only felt as if they could express deep emotion if one of them was hurt.
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 11:58 am (UTC)
There was a classic Leslie Fish K/S story published in the '70s that wonderfully explored how h/c was often a substitute for slash, too, as the male characters only felt as if they could express deep emotion if one of them was hurt.

Woo, another old-school ST:TOS fangirl! Yeah, one of the things I love about comic book slash is that it's so darn easy to get them hurt, and it does such wonderfully unbalancing things to the other one. *grin*

Leslie Fish, wow, flashback... *grin*
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jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:01 pm (UTC)
Bruce had never really dealt with an underlying attraction that he was slowly having to admit...or at least that was how it seemed to me.

Yes, that's exactly what I was aiming for! Cool. :) Glad that came across.

And it had tones of hot...but more for me...it was tones of tender.

Bruce having to care for someone or nurse them is one of the better ways to start a relationship, it seems to me (I'm reminded of Yena's wonderful winged Dinah series and the way Bruce is so deeply humanized through caring for her). It brings out the best in the man...despite himself, lol.

Glad you liked it! It was a fun challenge to write.
starsandsea
Jan. 8th, 2007 08:51 pm (UTC)
I loved this. I was feeling a bit depressed at having to go back to work today, and this made my day. Bruce desperately trying to complement Clark just cracked me up.

jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:03 pm (UTC)
I was feeling a bit depressed at having to go back to work today, and this made my day.

I live to make peoples' days! Glad to know this cheered you up a bit (though back to work is...blah...I had to do it today as well). How Bruce manages to be funny while tending a desperately wounded Clark I have no idea, but he does it!
sinisterf
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:11 am (UTC)
Awww...! This was so cute, the image of Batman grasping for nice things to say. It's like the words are there but he just couldn't find a way to express them. Wonderful and fun and so very sweet.
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 05:09 am (UTC)
It's like the words are there but he just couldn't find a way to express them.

Thank you! I found his frustration, and his growing realization that he means them too much to say them--very fun to write, once I settled in. :)
zvi_likes_tv
Jan. 9th, 2007 01:16 am (UTC)
It was all sort of angsty and fraught and then Hawkgirl snorted. "Don't knock yourself out with the compliments there, Dark Knight." and everything was to laugh. I mean, yes, Superman and Batman had already agreed that they liked each other, no, really! in the story, but that line just flips the emotional tenor of the whole story from angsty hurt/comfort to snortsnicker funny. I really like that.
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 05:12 am (UTC)
that line just flips the emotional tenor of the whole story from angsty hurt/comfort to snortsnicker funny.

It does tilt everything a little akilter, doesn't it? Hawkgirl is very good for that kind of tilting. *grin* I'm glad you liked it!
bungee
Jan. 9th, 2007 01:18 am (UTC)
N'awww, Batman's so oblivious when he's in love. :D Seriously, though, I really like the whole idea of the incapacitated Superman and Bruce having to care for him, since it's so rare that Superman would ever actually be sick. And Bruce's knee-jerk reaction to the whole situation that it's wrongwrongwrong, of course. :)
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 05:15 am (UTC)
And Bruce's knee-jerk reaction to the whole situation that it's wrongwrongwrong, of course. :)

Ahhhhh! Run away! Run away! Poor Bruce, it was touch and go whether or not he'd just flee the cave entirely. I'm glad he didn't, though! He would have missed all the comfort parts, sucky as he was at them. :)

This was so much harder to write than I thought it would be! Falling back on oblivious!Bruce (whom I love to write!) was my only reosort. *grin*
vejiicakes
Jan. 9th, 2007 01:37 am (UTC)
Oh, my weakness for vulnerable Clark, you exploit it so-! XD Don't know quite what it was in the earlier segment of this fic--I suspect it's Bruce's dry sense of humor that tends to come through even, or maybe especially, in desperate situations leaking into my consciousness or something--but I was in absolute giggles, which seemed terribly inappropriate at the time. The fight with the serpent (which sounded really cool, by the way) was scary of course, but brought on embarassing mental images of Clark's hurled rock falling short of it's target, Bruce barking orders at Clark through puffy, numb lips (okay, that was probably all me, but I really can't shake the image of a severe, angry Batman slurring with as much dignity as possible, "Kah, ssa' uh. Ge'uh, hclar!" I'M SORRY OKAY I'M STOPPING.)

Of course, Bruce's frantic, flailing initial attemps at complementing Clark didn't help the giggles any. You, um, lift things good..? XD I love that he totally knows, mid-ramble, how ludicrous it is to be at a loss to wax on Superman's/Clark's wonderful attributes.

"You have excellent bone structure." Great, Bruce. Make him sound like a stud stallion. "Nicely balanced ears. I know that seems minor, Clark, but lopsided ears can ruin the whole symmetry of a face." He studied Clark's face, looking for something else to praise. It was really the whole overall effect, he thought distractedly. It was surprisingly hard to focus on just one isolated thing. "Strong chin. Good mouth."

I half expected Bruce to pry open Clark's mouth and grunt, "Good teeth. And, uh, strong, load-bearing back.."

Then of course, he got to the hands, and the giggles stopped completely, because you have a way of describing simple, lovely, tender scenes like this that really showcase what wonderful, perfect command you have over mood with your writing. Even when you get to more poetic elements of Bruce's dialogue, tasting like joy or star in the darkness, etc, things I don't think I would like (probably the old days of Gundam Wing fic coming back to haunt me) it feels genuine and loving and it WORKS and HOW DO YOU DO THAT?? What are you, some crazy, make-everything-work magician??

Anyway, I have to confess some fondness for Clark's must-be-useful complex. Had a friend like that, who always felt he needed to be of use or people wouldn't bother with him, even his friends, and it was alternately frustrating and endearing, in a "how can you not see how special you are??" way, which feels very Clark to me. So, you know, *thumbs up*

Also? Sweaty boys yay~!!! XD
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:43 pm (UTC)
Oh, my weakness for vulnerable Clark, you exploit it so-!

I'm definitely a vulnerable Clark exploiter. :)

,i>I really can't shake the image of a severe, angry Batman slurring with as much dignity as possible, "Kah, ssa' uh. Ge'uh, hclar!" I'M SORRY OKAY I'M STOPPING.)</i>

*collapses in giggles*

I half expected Bruce to pry open Clark's mouth and grunt, "Good teeth. And, uh, strong, load-bearing back.."

Load-bearing back OMG, that would have been great! I just needed to think of Clark as a good horse he was evaluating. :)

Even when you get to more poetic elements of Bruce's dialogue, tasting like joy or star in the darkness, etc, things I don't think I would like (probably the old days of Gundam Wing fic coming back to haunt me) it feels genuine and loving and it WORKS and HOW DO YOU DO THAT??

Um, largely by resolutely ignoring how cliche it is and hoping for the best? :) People give me a lot of points for good intentions. *grin*

Anyway, I have to confess some fondness for Clark's must-be-useful complex.

I love that complex as well. I'm a sucker for the idea that somewhere inside Clark is convinced that without his powers he's just a dull guy that no one would look twice at, which must be why I enjoy taking them away from him so much, because he immediately Collapses into Woobie.

Thanks so much for the lovely feedback! It really made my day. I enjoyed writing this so much, even as DaMo told me to go back and add more detail for the fourth time. :)

spix_in_lj
Jan. 9th, 2007 04:18 am (UTC)
cliches...I love them^^

(PS:"Heroes"- english with spanish subtitles- is starting on March!! I love Universal Channel, they show ST,House m.d. and now Heroes!)
jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:49 pm (UTC)
PS:"Heroes"- english with spanish subtitles- is starting on March!! I love Universal Channel, they show ST,House m.d. and now Heroes!)

Oh, yay! I wonder how they'll handle Hiro and Ando, who speak mostly in Japanese with English subtitles...maybe just change the subtitles to Spanish? Anyway, I'm totally thrilled you'll get to see it! *grins a lot*
imitari
Jan. 9th, 2007 07:06 am (UTC)
Aw, man. I think I must've died and gone to h/c heaven. I ditto with the chap who pointed out the two big character points (Kal - must do something to have value, Bruce - um? expression of nice feelings?). Erg. Grammar seemed good. Love your sentence structure. Pretty paragraphs . . . It's too late at night to be constructive, so I give up now. (Without the excuse of broken ribs and massive parental death as young child, I exit!)

jij
Jan. 9th, 2007 12:58 pm (UTC)
Grammar seemed good. Love your sentence structure.

LMAO because you totally got me there, I read that and was like, "WTF? That's pretty tepid feedback--ohhhh, I get it." :)

(Without the excuse of broken ribs and massive parental death as young child, I exit!)

*snorks a lot* Nice exit! Thank you so much, I shall take your compliments in the spirit they were given. :)
hauyne
Jan. 9th, 2007 02:33 pm (UTC)
*squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee to death*
Oh, Aw, Wow, NNnnnnnnnn Thank you Jen! THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!!!
This is really hurt/comfort...Aww I really want to talk the points that deeply caught me. But I think I should do after reading it through again.

I really love it! Today is my happiest birthday.
Thank you!! (And thank Damo for making you write more more details... XD)
jij
Jan. 10th, 2007 01:34 am (UTC)
Thank you!! (And thank Damo for making you write more more details... XD)

I hope you had a wonderful birthday! And I thank DaMo too. He's the best beta-reader ever. *grins*

And thank you for your wonderful comments! I made you squee! *happy*
zarabithia
Jan. 10th, 2007 12:08 am (UTC)
Ooh, nothing like a nice piece of hurt/comfort fic. And yes, the others you mentioned were wonderful, but so too was this one. Clark/Bruce's interactions were lovely - though Clark's line about Bruce not being able to count on him anymore was hurty. OW.

But my favorite bit was Hawkgirl at the end: Hawkgirl snorted. "Don't knock yourself out with the compliments there, Dark Knight." *giggle.*
taro_twist
Jan. 10th, 2007 11:01 pm (UTC)
Oh, this was wonderful! I haven't gotten the chance to read the other h/c fics that have been posted yet, but if they're anything like this, I'm going to be very happy. :)

This was so awesome! I loved Bruce's voice throughout this entire thing, so dry and practical and ... in denial. Whee! And Clark was such a woobie, thinking he wasn't useful and then with the nightmare that he wasn't a good person. *sniff sniff*

And your descriptions of the planet were absolutely gorgeous! I loved how you described the red sun sapping Clark's strength, and your descriptions of the jungle and of the freaky serpent were so beautiful. It was like you were painting a picture. And I just happen to really love jungle descriptions, for whatever reason, so that plus h/c just made my day. :D

And some of the lines were absolutely hilarious, especially when Batman was trying to compliment Clark ... good spaces between knuckles ... bwahahahaha. I need to find someone to say that to now.

And your descriptions of Kal getting hurt from the poison and Bruce taking care of him were exquisitely yummy in that painful h/c way. :)

And I'm so happy that Clark realized that Bruce "liked him and thought he was okay" ;p

This was an amazing fic, as usual! I could just quote the whole damn thing. Beautiful beautiful beautiful beautiful. ^___^

jij
Jan. 11th, 2007 03:07 am (UTC)
I haven't gotten the chance to read the other h/c fics that have been posted yet, but if they're anything like this, I'm going to be very happy. :)

There's been an awesome crop of h/c recently! And oh man, I forgot to mention your wonderful bat-nursing sequence! Seriously, I think that could have been five times as long and I would have eaten it up. I must someday write a story where Clark is turned into a Laborador puppy or something and...and discovers he can't write due to his puppy brain being not wired for language or something...and gets taken into the Manor...damn, that would actually be a lot of fun.

And Clark was such a woobie, thinking he wasn't useful and then with the nightmare that he wasn't a good person. *sniff sniff*

I'm such a sucker for Clark fearing he's not good underneath it all. That's why he overworks himself and frets so, the poor thing.

good spaces between knuckles ... bwahahahaha. I need to find someone to say that to now.

It still doesn't beat "Bruce is better than cheese." Not by a long shot. :)

And I'm so happy that Clark realized that Bruce "liked him and thought he was okay" ;p

I figured he'd be able to hear through the lame words to the true emotion underneath it, if anyone could.

Thanks for the lovely feedback! *hugs*
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spix_in_lj
Jan. 11th, 2007 02:37 am (UTC)
Hiro and Ando were a good practice to my japanese^^I´m so happy I´m going to be watching them so soon!!
arch_schatten
Jan. 12th, 2007 05:52 pm (UTC)
Aha! Cave fic! And I’m not feverish now, so maybe I’ll be able to make some coherent comments! *grins* I wouldn’t bet on it, but maybe!

"Kal, I think you're going to have to get us out of this. She's not going to make it."

The geeky side of my Bruce muse was almost pouting because his girl wasn’t going to make it. Aww. Javeline’s are Bruce’s baby girls!

Batman looked at the beads of sweat making their way down Kal's face for a second, then reached up and pulled off his cowl, revealing his own sweat-damp curls.

Dun dun dun! Hair porn! And the cape porn of the landing, yay! .. sweaty damp black curls and Bruce smiling! *sighs dreamily*

explosion of rainbow color which resolved itself into some kind of serpent with a multitude of feathered wings and a mouthful of diamond-glittering fangs.

o_o woeee, bird+snake! Why??? Why?? Why would you do that to meeee?

Half-conscious at best, injured, racked with poison and bereft of powers, Clark Kent flinched and staggered to his feet at the command, swaying.

Aiee! Clark! That Bruce uses the Bat voice as a whip to get Clark to listen, it.. it kind of hurts? In a way? Because Clark listens to him, of course he does, but then later Batman is a judge... and :(

You...lift things very well. And the flying is extremely impressive

ROFL, oh Bruce. Oh dear, he really sucks at this, doesn’t he? If it was a clinical list of Clark’s capabilities, he could spend an hour reciting them, but complimenting? Hehe, oh dear. Good knuckles!

In a frozen moment of horror, Bruce saw tears slipping from Kal's closed eyes, tracking down his grimy cheeks. He fought a wild impulse to drop Kal's wrist and bolt from the cave to safety.

Eeeep! I followed Bruce’s reaction to a t there! Except for the bolting from the room, because I want to finish reading, but yeah. Clark crying! Mayday! Mayday! Someone who knows what to do do something!

If he hadn't been holding on to Kal's wrist, Bruce might have buried his face in his hands. Why couldn't he do this convincingly?

LOL, aww, my boy! He’s so adorable when he frets, isn’t he? Convincing compliments wouldn’t ring true for him, not here at least, and his frustration is hilarious and adorable. My favorite kind of Bruce!

…HAND PORN! Weeeeeeeeeeeeee!! Oh, yes. Seduction style=unintentional! X)

"Kal, you damn fool idiot."

LOL, oh, my dear articulated Bruce. He’s such a sweet talker! The real him is just awful communicating, isn’t him? teheee

That Clark's subconscious would cast Batman as an accuser...displeased Bruce.

"He meant that he...liked me, and I was okay," said Clark against Bruce's fingers.

Kings of Understatements! You were on a roll, Jen!

More hand porn! *Mina melts* Oh! Communicator porn! Guh, that was… evil. So evil. Evil Clark. That needs further exploration!

"Nice construction," he said appreciatively.

Of course John would notice. Architects for the win! I love your Shayera!

You really took us on a rollercoaster with this one! It’s everywhere, and it’s great, and your boys are great! Animated Batman, isn’t it? He’s so good at the dry voice and the concerned-and-failing-at-life thing :P And your Clark, at the end, is wicked enough to be animated Clark too. Finger licking good! You take clichés and you make them high art! X) lol, no, really. You really rocked this one!
jij
Jan. 13th, 2007 02:48 pm (UTC)
Cave fic! And I’m not feverish now, so maybe I’ll be able to make some coherent comments! *grins* I wouldn’t bet on it, but maybe!

And yet there's a certain poetic appropriateness to commenting on this story while feverish! *grin*

o_o woeee, bird+snake! Why??? Why?? Why would you do that to meeee?

I was so thinking of you here! I should have added some bug legs or something just to make the horror complete...

Aiee! Clark! That Bruce uses the Bat voice as a whip to get Clark to listen, it.. it kind of hurts? In a way? Because Clark listens to him, of course he does, but then later Batman is a judge... and :(

Ah, you caught that! I knoooooooow, poor Clark, he'll try to do whatever the Bat tells him to do when he feels like he's just Clark. :(

Clark crying! Mayday! Mayday! Someone who knows what to do do something!

Like your SS story, I had to do something desperate to get Bruce to stop complimenting Clark's powers and move on to something more personal!

Kings of Understatements! You were on a roll, Jen!

Aw, I love the boys being understated so everyone knows they mean the opposite.

Oh! Communicator porn! Guh, that was… evil. So evil. Evil Clark. That needs further exploration!

*makes mental note of it for bunny list*

Of course John would notice. Architects for the win!

I liked that he noticed! I just read his first appearance in Green Lantern this week! Angry, angry young architect!

Animated Batman, isn’t it? He’s so good at the dry voice and the concerned-and-failing-at-life thing

Protective/worried Bruce, for some reason, is almost always Toonverse for me. Funny!

You take clichés and you make them high art! X)

Why, thank you! I'm a postmodern cliche writer. :)

I had fun with this one, although it was harder than expected! Very weird...



batfan_sarah
Jan. 12th, 2007 09:31 pm (UTC)
EEE!

great story, as usual.

so sweet, and the hands were so hot...oh man.

and now, i'm off to drive 7 hours back to school.

this has put me in a good mood, at least.
jij
Jan. 14th, 2007 08:33 am (UTC)
this has put me in a good mood, at least.

Well, good! That's a brutal drive...glad I could give you some hand porn to lighten your thoughts. :)

carolandtom
Jan. 13th, 2007 06:43 pm (UTC)
Great story! I love H/C fics, particularly those where Clark is hurt and Bruce takes care of him. So this is a treat for me. Thank you!

Both the story and the writing are wonderful. I commend you on an awesome job!
jij
Jan. 14th, 2007 08:55 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! I love reading H/C and I find it a very challenging genre, so I wanted to give writing it a go. Glad you liked it!
witchwillow
Jan. 24th, 2007 02:59 am (UTC)
Oh this one was very nice too. You're always rather spot on on interpretations for Kal-El. I have to admit I don't see Bruce being quite so out of sorts myself. But I can believe it when I read it from you.

Yay to me, for hunting around to see if you have more cheerful fic so I could get me JnJ fix in.
jij
Jan. 24th, 2007 04:33 am (UTC)
I have to admit I don't see Bruce being quite so out of sorts myself. But I can believe it when I read it from you.

Aw, thank you! My Kal-El characterizations are usually pretty reliable, but my Bruce can range all over the place, from just plain fuzzy right out to snarly. Which is really frustrating! He needs to just settle down and let me be consistent, darn him.

Of recent fic, I would point to "Bound and Determined" as one of the more cheerful ones. At least Bruce has a good reason to be grouchy there. :)
svgurl
Jun. 27th, 2007 05:21 am (UTC)
that was so great! i was laughing at bruce trying to come up with compliments. nice knuckles? oh, bruce! you're priceless!

i love this story . . . bruce taking care of clark always gets to me. :D

great work! :)
jij
Jun. 28th, 2007 06:07 am (UTC)
I will admit that "nice knuckles" as a compliment made me cackle madly for days while writing this. And yet I'm sure he has very nice knuckles!

Because Clark is usually so hard to hurt, I seem to get a real kick out of doing it. :) That and it unhinges Bruce entirely. *grin*

Thanks so much for commenting! You make my day!
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